English Soccer News

Declan Rice: West Ham midfielder reveals he received threats after England switch

Declan Rice won his fourth England cap in the 4-0 win against Bulgaria on Saturday

West Ham United midfielder Declan Rice says he received threats over social media after switching allegiance from the Republic of Ireland to England.

The 20-year-old represented Ireland at youth level and won three senior caps – in friendlies – before switching to the country of his birth in February.

“I’ve had people saying they’re going to come to my house,” he told ITV News.

“You click on their profile and they’d just be a fake profile, so you don’t know whether it’s true or not.”

Rice is the latest high profile player to reveal they have been have been abused on social media, and England women’s head coach Phil Neville says players should boycott it.

Rice has won four caps for England and featured in their 4-0 Euro 2020 qualifier win against Bulgaria on Saturday.

“Thinking about it, I was never actually scared about it, because always fans are going to be giving me abuse and whatnot over it,” he added.

“You just kind of look at it and laugh, you think, ‘Yeah, all right, as if you’re going to come and do that type of thing’.”

Rice’s England team-mate Marcus Rashford was racially abused on social media after missing a penalty in Manchester United’s defeat by Crystal Palace in August and has said he fears football is “moving backwards”.

Social media platform Twitter says it had “taken action” on “more than 700 examples of hateful conduct” in the two weeks leading up to England’s win against Bulgaria.

Twitter said it had also met “directly affected” clubs, the Professional Footballers’ Association and Kick it Out in an attempt to “tackle the issue collectively”.

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